Syracuse Technology Garden
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Syracuse Technology Garden

Central New York's Creative Core


Nasir Ali
Nasir Ali is Vice President, New Venture Development for the Greater Syracuse Chamber of Commerce. Ali’s primary mission is to support the creation of an entrepreneurial culture in Syracuse and the Central New York region. In addition to managing the Syracuse Technology Garden and Sam Williams Business Center, Ali also coordinates CNY Angel, a group of early stage investors; manages a network of experienced mentors; and oversees, a one-stop online resource for the region’s entrepreneurs.

Ali moved to Syracuse from Washington, DC, where he was an Associate at Booz Allen Hamilton charged with helping IRS Commissioners manage over $1 billion in technology modernization and workforce restructuring initiatives. Prior to this, he co-founded New Think (a mobile commerce services firm) and WritersPoint (an offshore technical writing company). Before beginning his career as an entrepreneur, Ali turned around large-scale software, telecommunications, and systems integration projects for Fortune 100 companies. He received his MBA in Finance and Operations Management from Yale University’s School of Management, where he helped initiate a joint Masters degree program in Industrial Environmental Management. Ali graduated from Princeton University with a degree in Physics and a concentration in Economics.

Nasir can be reached by email at:

Paul C. Brooks
Paul Brooks joined the Syracuse Technology Garden as Executive Director in July 2006. He is responsible for management of the Technology Garden and oversight of its programs and entrepreneurship outreach. His focus is to foster high tech entrepreneurship in the Central New York region through start-up business incubation, both resident and virtual.

Paul is an experienced entrepreneur having owned Brooks Communications, a technology oriented marketing communications firm. In addition, he has a wealth of sales, marketing and administrative tenure in both high-tech businesses, and financial services organizations. His special area of expertise is business development, sales and marketing, lending that capability to the Technology Garden’s services to its clients.

Prior to joining the Technology Garden, Paul was Northeastern Regional Business Development Director of Cincom Systems, a worldwide software development and marketing firm headquartered in Cincinnati. His previous associations include management responsibilities at Xerox Corporation, Sykes Datatronics and CIS Corporation where he served as Vice President Communications and Management Services.

Mr. Brooks holds a BS degree in Business Administration and an MBA in Marketing Management from Syracuse University. In addition to his business involvement he has an active community presence serving as Chairman of the Board of the Greater Cazenovia Area Chamber of Commerce, and as an elected member of the Board of Trustees of the Village of Cazenovia.

Paul can be reached at 315-474-0910 or by email at:

Celia Rea
Celia Rea is Director of Development for the Syracuse Technology Garden (STG). Rea is responsible for creating and implementing a fundraising program for the Tech Garden As well as for attracting major companies to be part of the STG brand through programming and sponsorship support. Also, Rea will be promoting Greater Syracuse Economic Development Corporation events throughout Central and Upstate New York.

Rea moved to Syracuse from New York City. She has over twenty-five years of experience in the nonprofit sector, including fundraising, association management, trade show and convention planning, special events and marketing and promotion.

Most recently she was Director of Development for The Churchill School in New York City. Prior to that she was Director of Development and Communications for the Dwight School and Director of Development of the Northeast Region of Boys & Girls Clubs of America, also in New York City.

Rea is a graduate of Cornell University where she serves on the Cornell University Council, The Advisory Board of The Cornell Catholic Community, and the Board of the Cornell Alumni Association of Central New York. She is also an officer of the Cornell Class of 1979.

She can be reached by phone at 315-474-0910 or by e-mail at

Lynn M. Hughes
Lynn joined the Syracuse Technology Garden (STG) as Associate Manager in October 2004. She is responsible for facility and operations management. She is also responsible for organizing all events at STG and represents STG at promotional events.

Lynn is an experienced manager having served as Vice President of Administration with United Way of Central New York. In that role she was responsible for facility management, human resources, and information technology.

Lynn’s professional associations include membership with Woman Business Owners Connection (WBOC), South Side Entrepreneurs Association (SSEA), and the Downtown Business Connections networking group. She also represents STG with the TH3 program.

When not managing STG Lynn provides a foster home for dogs waiting for adoption, serves as coordinator of her high school reunion campaign, and assists her entrepreneur brother with his flourishing business Alyn’s Emporium in Madison, New York.

Lynn can be reached by email at:

Judy Ellis
Ellis joined the Syracuse Technology Garden (STG) as a staff accountant. Judy has over 15 years of experience in the accounting field, including her most recent position as an accountant with the Onondaga County Department of Aging and Youth.

Ellis is responsible for managing financial and accounting activities for STG and Syracuse Chamber New Venture Development initiatives including Space Alliance Technology Outreach Program (SATOP).

Ellis is a graduate of SUNY Geneseo with a Bachelor of Science in Accounting. Ellis is a native of Syracuse and lives in Camillus with her husband, Robert, and her two children. Her hobbies include geneology and jogging.

Judy can be reached by email at:

Annina E. Washington
Annina (or “Nina”) joined the Syracuse Technology Garden in April, 2005 after a brief internship at the facility. Washington serves as the receptionist for all the tenants and as office assistant to the Tech Garden staff. Washington is the “go to” person for a myriad of general office activities including technical support for AV programming; building security authorization; meeting and events set-up, booking and reservations; plus clerical support including the creation of slide presentations, recordkeeping and data entry.

Washington holds an administrative/medical assistant associate’s degree from Bryant & Stratton College, Syracuse. Prior to joining the Syracuse Technology Garden, Annina received certification as a nurses aide and worked at Loretto’s Cunningham facility.

Outside organizations can contact Annina for conference room bookings at (315) 474-0910 ext.2914 or via email at

235 Harrison Street
Syracuse, NY 13202

T: (315) 474-0910
F: (315) 474-0915